Nestled between mountains and ocean, and just a hop over from Portsmouth and the bustling campus of the University of New Hampshire, Dover is a hidden gem on the Seacoast. The picturesque Cocheco River runs through the quaint center of town, surrounded by an abundance of eateries offering up creative cuisine and craft beers from microbreweries around the region.
431 Central Avenue
With an expansive menu boasting a range of lunch, dinner, and drink options, Blue Latitudes offers something for everyone. Owner Jeff Roemer caters to a broad audience at this modern American eatery, located inside the historic Cocheco Falls Millworks. If you’re with a group start off with The Pagoda—a choice of three appetizers for the price of two and a half. Locals flock to Ultimate Nachos, and Seared Scallops with Wilted Spinach is another fan favorite, along with anything tuna—like the Ahi Tuna Wrap, Sesame Ahi Tuna Sashimi, or the Sesame Ginger Salad with Tuna. Meatier options include Chicken Bruschetta and Peppercorn Steak Tips. A selection of mixed drinks and draft beers rotates to highlight seasonal flavors. End the meal with the Chocolate Chip Calzone, with marshmallows and mascarpone and topped with vanilla ice cream.
Christopher’s Third Street Grille
16 Third Street
At Christopher’s Third Street Grille owner and Executive Chef Christopher Lund prepares classic American staples with a twist—and family-friendly pricing. With 35-plus years in the food industry (including stints at Legal Sea Foods and Not Your Average Joe’s), Lund had ample time to perfect his craft when he opened his own place in 2007. At lunch, go for the Build-Your-Own-Sandwich or the rotating Grilled Flatbread Pizza of the Day. For dinner start with a bread bowl filled with Spinach & Artichoke Dip. Sample one of the myriad martinis or selection of local craft beers, and sip it with the best-selling 8-ounce Filet Mignon, or the Sizzling Ribeye Steak. The Chicken Boursin, topped with crispy fried leeks and served with Asiago risotto is also a great choice. Dip into seafood with the Lobster Mac ’n’ Cheese or Mixed Seafood Grill.
Thirsty Moose Taphouse
83 Washington Street
Beer connoisseurs will rejoice at the Thirsty Moose Taphouse, with over 70 draft lines, from Budweiser to limited release craft beers. Offerings change every week, so there’s always something new. If your favorite New England team is playing, you can catch them on one of the over 20 TVs set up throughout the restaurant. Pair your favorite beverage with a sampling of Beer Bites. The sought after Moose Rolls feature barbeque pulled pork and coleslaw wrapped in a crispy eggroll shell with a side of dipping sauce. Chicken Wings are dry-rubbed and cooked in a hickory wood slow smoker then fried or grilled to order. Creative pizza options include a smoky Cajun Chicken Broccoli Alfredo. Several salads round out the finger food side of the menu, like Spinach Salad, with strawberries, gorgonzola, and pickled onions.
The Farm Bar & Grille
25 Portland Avenue
Come be a part of the “farmily” at The Farm Bar & Grille, owned by brothers Brad Atkinson and Ryan Cox and their cousin Noah Goldstein. The eatery opened in 2011 and is now one of four locations in New England. Take a seat on the three-seasons deck, or outside overlooking the Cocheco River. Not to miss are the BBQ Nachos: hand cut tortilla chips covered with melted Vermont cheddar cheese, slow-smoked pulled pork, and barbeque sauce (made only by Atkinson and Cox; “It’s totally a secret recipe,” says Atkinson). The West Coast Burger is a quarter pound of Angus ground chuck topped with guacamole and bacon. On the lighter end, Tuna Volcano is wakame seaweed, ahi tuna, and avocado. As the summer nights begin to cool, try the Three Ball Soup with the Mozzarella Bites—it’s like a grilled cheese sandwich in a bowl.
Fury’s Publick House
1 Washington Street
You’ll get dinner and a show at this popular pub, where live music from local talent is a regular several nights a week. Situated on the Cocheco River, Fury’s Publick offers casual and unique pub grub. Owner Eric Gens incorporates plenty of his Irish-German heritage into the menu, offering original items like the Bucket ’O Bacon, served with chocolate, smoked gouda, and sage gravy sauces. “Who doesn’t like snacking on bacon and dipping it in things?” Gens says. The German Cucumber salad, with a creamy dill dressing, was inspired by Gens’s grandfather. Sandwich options include the grilled Reuben, with house-made corned beef, and Rayzah’s Cubano, with coffee roast pork, ham, and chorizo. Ale Battered Cod is Fury’s nod to fish and chips, served with hand-cut fries. And of course there’s a great selection of beers on tap.